Phoyo via Facebook.
Hi friends! It’s your buddy who grew up in the sticks! I’m here to teach you a very special lesson: you shouldn’t hand-feed bears.Let me tell you all a little story. Growing up in a small(ish) Alberta town my teenage friends and me, well, we would get bored. So a couple times we loaded up in my red 1997 Ford Explorer with bad brakes and drive two hours east to the smaller town of Whitecourt. From here we would venture deep into the logging trails that punctuate the woods there—my friend had a hunting spot out there. Our reason for being there? We knew it was ripe with bears.
So, in my Explorer with the bad brakes, we would drive around slowly, listening to bad country and Metallica, trying to spot bears and you know what, we would find them sometimes. When we did we would stop the vehicle and watch them. You know what we wouldn’t do? We didn’t get out of my 1997 Ford Explorer and hand-feed the bears fucking timbits because while what we were doing was dumb, hand-feeding the bears doughnut-holes is infinitely dumber.
This is a lesson that would have saved two people from facing charges because of their stupid actions. These two people took photos of themselves hand-feeding the bears, you see. The photos were taken on the Alaska highway (which runs through BC) last year and posted on social media—once online someone tipped off the B.C.’s Conservation Officer Service.CTV News reports that Randy Scott and Megan Hiltz are both charged with one count of feeding or attempting to feed dangerous wildlife. As CTV News found, on Randy Scott’s Facebook page was another photo that seemingly shows him feeding a bear a timbit—the outlet reported there were more photos but when VICE checked all photos—minus the one we used for the lead image—were deleted.
It’s not just the obvious self-preservation reasons why you shouldn’t feed the bears, it’s also because you can make the bears habituated to people and that’s bad for all involved.“Our big concern with people feeding bears is that once a bear becomes habituated to people and he starts associating people with food, then they become a danger to the public,” conservation officer Sam Harris told the Canadian Press on Wednesday.The duo will be heading to court in November, here’s hoping they don’t hand-feed a cougar a McMuffin or something on the way in.Sign up for the VICE Canada Newsletter to get the best of VICE Canada delivered to your inbox.Follow Mack Lamoureux on Twitter .